A Soiree Through Mui Ne

By Morgan Pettersson

Vietnam is a country better known for its past than its present.

The beach along Mui Ne

An image that is often conjured is of the war and the resulting devastation.

Yet Vietnam is a country exploding onto the travellers top destination list in recent years.

With this new crowd of travellers and tourists arriving in Vietnam, it is becoming harder to find somewhere quiet and real to go to experience the tastes of Vietnam.

Enter Mui Ne, a small fishing village with the laid back surfer charm that many weary travellers crave, along with a pumping nightlife, plenty of adventure and friendly locals.

Mui Ne is located in the Binh Thuan province in the south-eastern region of Vietnam, and is roughly a five-hour bus ride from Ho Chi Minh City, although the buses tend to run late or be delayed so the journey is often longer.

The small fishing village is basically just a 15km stretch of beach with one road dividing the resorts and beach side bungalows from the shops and restaurants.

Yet this small village retains the perfect balance between old and new world charm, with a splash of laid back surfer vibe.

Even though there has been a resort boom in recent years, with resorts taking over the beach, there still remains smaller and more intimate bungalows and hotels available to stay at, which offer more privacy and a more relaxed atmosphere.

This is the water sports capital of Vietnam with kite boarding and wind surfers ruling the waves.

If you have ever considered to learning to wind or kite surf now is your time if you have a few days to spare in Mui Ne.

If water sports are not your thing then don’t fear, Mui Ne has plenty more to offer.

You can relax on the beach under the palm trees, enjoy a massage at one of the local massage parlors, try some traditional Vietnamese coffee or venture for something a little more adventurous.

Picture you are standing amid towering sand hills which stretch for as far as the eye can see, are you in the middle of the desert?

Sand dunes

No, you are still in Mui Ne.

The White Sand Dunes or Bao Trang of Mui Ne are a sight to behold.

Rent a quad bike when you are there to be able to zoom around the sand hills and explore fully, then head back and relax in one of the hammocks in the shade before returning back to Mui Ne.

It is one of the driest areas in South East Asia and can be reached by both jeep or motorcycle for the more adventurous, but be warned it is a long ride by bike.

You will also pass the red sand dunes along the way, which are much smaller but also great to get out and have a quick look at.

There is quite a problem along the beach with coastal erosion, with the sand naturally moving up and down the beach.

This has unfortunately lead to many resort and hotel owners sand bagging the beach to try to stop the sand from shifting away, which would lead to their strip of beach disappearing for their guests.

It is not known how effective this sand bagging is, or how bad the erosion of the area is, but try to lower your environmental impact when in the area.

Mui Ne is a relatively un spoilt gem in the heart of Vietnam, and even though it is now overflowing with resorts you can still manage to feel like a gringo amid the many locals, who will welcome you whole heartedly to their village.

As it is becoming a more popular travel destination, now is the time to travel there to feast on the as yet unspoilt wonder that is Vietnam.

Where to stay: Hiep Hoa Beach Side Bungalows, are your home away from home. The local family who run the place are some of the most kind and warm-hearted people you will ever meet.

Where to eat: Joes Cafe, your second home away from home, Joes Cafe is run by an American and Vietnamese couple and is the only place in Mui Ne open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There is live entertainment nightly and great food and drinks and a relaxed atmosphere. This is the place all of the travellers go so you will be sure to meet people.

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